Shoes where I can wear my orthotics for normally barefoot activities?
December 17, 2013 5:12 PM   Subscribe

Are there minimalist shoes that would allow me to wear my corrective orthotics during normally barefoot activities?

I have crappy feet- fallen arches and a valgus deformity in my knees. It's corrected with custom orthotics that are built up on the inner edge. These work great, until I want to do yoga, or a dance class, and have to go barefoot. Without the corrective wedges, my poor knees suffer.

Regular running shoes feel too clunky and the thick sole gets in my way. Short of duct-taping my orthotics to my feet, is there another type of shoe I could try? I was ideally thinking of something like climbing shoes, but most 'minimalist' shoes are not orthotic-friendly, and I have pretty wide feet, so there is not a lot of extra room in my shoes for cramming the orthotics in. Anyone else have experience with this? I've come to peace with spending $$$ on my feet, so really anything goes.
posted by genmonster to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (5 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
Kung fu shoes?
posted by Qberting at 5:20 PM on December 17, 2013

It sounds like a pair of Bare Running Shoes would be perfect for your situation.

They're super lightweight to help closely mimic running barefoot. I know tons of people who wear them (Seattle) for the gym, hiking, and so on. They seem surprisingly durable and accepted in normally barefoot situations (such as yoga).

You can get a pair for $60-$150 or so.
posted by stubbehtail at 5:32 PM on December 17, 2013

the best I've been able to come up with is a pair of cheap water shoes that you can rip the innersoles out of. Hard to find a pair with a completely flat surface though, but if gets me through a day at the beach.
posted by any major dude at 6:18 PM on December 17, 2013 [1 favorite]

Don't get climbing shoes. They are designed to make your foot curl up into a "fist" (because this increases your leg power when climbing) so orthotics won't fit in them and they'll b useless for anything that requires your feet to be flat.

How about a pair of converse 1-stars? They have flat thin soles and removable inner soles.
posted by girlgenius at 11:24 PM on December 17, 2013

I had good luck this summer with a pair of all-star-like shoes that had no shaped support at all. I took out the inner sole that came in them and put my orthotics in. The soles were so thin that the part of my foot not on the orthotics wasn't comfortable, so I added some Dr. Scholl's cushioned insoles under my orthotics. I don't run, but I wore these comfortably for walking all summer long.

My shoes were actually Keens, which is the most orthotic-friendly brand I've found for my particular feet.
posted by not that girl at 5:00 AM on December 18, 2013

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